(Make Me a) TRISTE© Mixtape Episode 51: Catchers


Catchers are an Irish indie band formed in 1993 and led by singer-songwriter Dale Grundle with Alice Lemon (vocals/keyboards). Former band members include Peter Kelly (drums), Ger FitzGerald (bass, until 1995), Craig Carpenter (bass, 1996 onwards) and Jonathan Lord (lead guitar, 1998).
Grundle and Lemon had known each other since their teens in Portstewart, Northern Ireland. Their first release, a 7″ called Cotton Dress, was recorded with Divine Comedy producer Darren Allison on Setanta Records and became Melody Maker’s Single Of The Week.
Mute, the band’s first album, produced by Mike Hedges, was released in 1994 to critical acclaim. Four years later the band released Stooping to Fit, their second album, recorded at the Cocteau Twins studios in London, and displaying strings and brass arrangements by Nick Drake’s collaborator, Robert Kirby.
After the Catchers last gig, on February 1999, the band went on a prolonged hiatus and, in 2006, news of Dale Grundle started working on a new project called The Sleeping Years,
which had four e.p. and a wonderful album, We’re Becoming Islands One By One (on Rocket Girl), out between 2007 and 2009.

In June 2019, Catchers reissued Mute on vinyl through the French record label, Les Disques du 7ème Ciel, and also released a live album and an album of outtakes, We Speak in Flames through TSY Records. That year, Dale and Alice reformed the band to play shows in France to promote the 25th anniversary edition of Mute and, in 2021 Dale and Alice began writing new material with drummer Roger Luxton, releasing Catchers new single Something’s Taking Over Me on 5 November 2021. A new Catchers’ album is due out in 2022.

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(Make Me a) TRISTE© Mixtape Episode 50: French For Rabbits

French For Rabbits (by Lily Paris West)

Aotearoa’s French for Rabbits create music that feels like it has been crafted from the fabric of the New Zealand landscape – all salty waves, isolated coastlines, grains of sands and expansive skies. It is intimate and expansive, welcoming and wary, poetic but piercing. Based on the creative vision of songwriter, producer and pianist Brooke Singer, the project came to life when she started working with guitarist John Fitzgerald in the small coastal township of Waikuku Beach back in 2012. His minimalist but shimmering guitar lines proved to be the backbone of their early work, and over the years the band has blossomed outwards to include the considerable talents of multi-instrumentalists Ben Lemi (Trinity Roots, Dawn Diver) and Penelope Esplin (Grawlixes) alongside drummer Hikurangi Schaverien-Kaa. Together, they have released four records: the wonderful EP Claimed by the Sea in 2012, the debut album Spirits in 2014, The Weight of Melted Snow which was released in 2017 in New Zealand and in 2019 in the rest of the world, and The Overflow which was out in November via AAA records (NZ/AUS), Reckless Yes (UK) and A Modest Proposal (Italy).

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(Make Me a) TRISTE© Mixtape Episode 49: David Christian and The Pinecone Orchestra

David Christian and The Pinecone Orchestra (© Anne-Laure Guillain)

After 29 years with British indie/garage/beat/punk/psych-pop collective Comet Gain, singer/mastermind David Christian (Feck) is going “solo”. Under the sun of his new home in the South of France, exchanged for Brexit London, he created a folk-rock album with the kind help of numerous friends on numerous instruments. The LP was made in the middle of the french countryside in a barn/farm owned by Mike and Allison Targett of Heist where along with drummer Cosmic Neman (Zombie/Zombie, Herman Dune) they cut the record with Mike producing and both Targetts adding vocals, pianos etc. Then later, the group of friends known as The Pinecone Orchestra – James Horsey and Alasdair MacLean (The Clientele), Ben Phillipson (18th Day Of May/Trimdon Grange Explosion/Comet Gain), Gerry Love (Teenage Fan Club/Lightships), Anne-Laure Guillain (Comet Gain/Cinema Red And Blue) and Joe-Harvey Whyte (Hanging Stars) – coloured everything in with guitars, vocals, bass, pedal steel etc.. The result is called For Those We Met On The Way and is out now on German label Tapete Records.

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(Make Me a) TRISTE© Mixtape Episode 48: Shoestrings


Shoestrings is Mario and Rose Suau, a husband and wife duo, from the northern suburbs of Detroit, Michigan. Shoestrings was formed as a true bedroom pop project in the mid-90s when the two were in college. For Mario and Rose, their primary intent for starting a band has always been to write, record, and produce memorable songs with relatable, heartfelt sentiment. The Shoestrings aesthetic is a meticulously-crafted filigree of washy guitars, soft synths, pensive vocals, and thoughtful lyrics.
After releasing their debut album, Wishing On Planes, and appearing on several notable indie compilations, Mario and Rose took a long hiatus to evolve their production skills and to pursue other music projects.
This fall, Shoestrings resurfaced with their long-awaited sophomore album, Expectations. Sonically, the album draws on several genres: indie pop, dream pop, shoegaze, and sophistipop to create their own matured, distinctly sensitive sound. The collection of songs is a delicate and wistful reflection on past events and lessons learned.
The album is released by Shelflife Records (North America), Discos de Kirlian (Europe), and Fastcut Records (Japan) and it’s magnificent!

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(Make Me a) TRISTE© Mixtape Episode 47: Lonny

Lonny (crédit Frédérique Bérubé)

Born in the mountains, raised in Paris, developing her musical talents in Quebec, Louise Lhermitte chose the pseudonym Lonny to bring her songs to life: it’s a way to celebrate the loneliness she needs to write, and a sort of tribute to Neil Young’s “Loner”.
The twenty-eight years old Louise-Lonny has already traveled a lot, with her guitar and her violin under her arm, solo or in trio, on many different stages: she studied opera singing and viola since her childhood and always knew that she would choose music to express herself. Her first EP (under the name Lonny Montem), was What kind of music do you play?, out in 2017 and sung in English, but, after returning from a duet tour of Quebec with singer Florent Bertonnier, alias Refuge, she decided to write in French. With, for literary references, artists like Yves Simon, Véronique Sanson or Dominique A, and among his bedside books, Les Nourritures terrestres by André Gide.
Her debut album, Ex-Voto will be out on January 21, 2022.

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